What is Embalming?
Embalming is a service which is offered by your chosen Funeral Director. The service may be called Embalming, Hygienic Treatment or may be described as necessary preparations. The procedure is carried out for three reasons: –
Embalming is not unlike having a blood transfusion. The embalming fluid, usually Formaldehyde, is sent throughout the body using the body’s own circulatory system. The embalming fluid contains, amongst other things, preservative rehydrating products, water correctives and dyes.
Benefits of Embalming
The human body is genetically designed to return to its basic elements once death has occurred. This process, called decomposition, is started by the bacteria, which are naturally present in the body during life. Decomposition will continue unless refrigeration or embalming are used.
The preservation qualities of the procedure means that you can visit your loved one on more than one occasion right up to the day of the funeral. Even if you feel that you’d rather not visit your loved one in the Chapel of Rest, during the time approaching the funeral, you may change your mind. Embalming will give you the opportunity to do so.
Embalming can restore a more natural appearance, giving the deceased a peaceful repose. It may also remove some, if not all, the obvious signs of illness or trauma suffered prior to death, which may be of great comfort to those suffering from grief.
If possible, it is recommended that the Funeral Director is given a recent photograph of the deceased, which can be of use for cosmetic purposes. For dressing, and because of possible changes to the condition of the deceased, a long-sleeved item of clothing would be preferable with a high neckline and/ or scarf to complete the presentation.
After death, changes to the body can produce a pale appearance. This is counteracted by adding colouring to the embalming fluid, which gives the body a more natural appearance. Other fluid can also be used to rehydrate the body to enhance the appearance further.
Embalming is necessary for the presentation and sanitation of the deceased. This process also allows the deceased to be touched or their hands held whilst receiving visitors, without the possible risks of transferring pathogens.
We would also recommend Embalming if the deceased is to be received into church or to be taken home prior to the funeral.